Thursday, October 2, 2008

Bailout Bill HR1424 (Amended) - A point here....

Information from - Emphasis is mine.

Measure Title:
A bill to provide authority for the Federal Government to purchase and insure certain types of troubled assets for the purposes of providing stability to and preventing disruption in the economy and financial system and protecting taxpayers, to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide incentives for energy production and conservation, to extend certain expiring provisions, to provide individual income tax relief, and for other purposes.

Senate Vote count - 74 Yea, 25 Nay, 1 Not Voting(Kennedy - I think he can be excused what with the deadly brain tumor and all)

Vote breakdown is located HERE

Interesting note on this bill. There have been numerous additions made to this bill, to the tune of $110 BILLION. So the grand total on this bill is more than $800 Billion.

From "Most of the $110 billion in additions, such as a tax credit for research and development and an increase in insurance for bank accounts, would have broad economic impact."

"The Taxpayers for Common Sense also reports that the proposal includes such mouthwatering morsels as these:

  • Creation of a seven-year cost recovery period for construction of a motorsports racetrack: Track owners currently follow a seven-year depreciation schedule and write each year's depreciation off their taxes. The IRS wanted to increase the depreciation timetable to 15 years, which would mean the track owner's depreciation would be cut in half. The measure in the keeps the seven-year depreciation schedule for two years and would cost taxpayers $100 million.
  • A refund of excise taxes to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands for rum: A $13.50 per gallon excise tax is placed on rum imported into the United States. The measure extends to December 31, 2009, a refund of $13.25 per gallon tax back to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, which are both U.S. territories. The refund has been in place since the early '90s. The measure would cost taxpayers $192 million.
  • Income averaging for amounts received in connection with the Exxon Valdez litigation: The measure would allow the plaintiffs who won damages from Exxon Mobile for the oil spilled by the Exxon Valdez to average the award over three years rather than treating it as income in a single year. The measure was backed by Alaska Rep. Don Young and would cost taxpayers $49 million.
  • Secure rural schools and community self-determination program: The program replaces revenue rural communities used to enjoy from the sale of federal forest land. The measure is sponsored by lawmakers from Oregon and Idaho. The program would cost taxpayers $3.3 billion.
  • Deduction of state and local sales taxes: The measure allows citizens who do not pay state income taxes to deduct the amount of sales tax they pay over a year from their federal income tax for two additional years. States that benefit include Texas, Nevada, Florida, Washington and Wyoming. The measure would cost taxpayers $3.3 billion.
  • Provisions related to film and television productions: In order to keep movie production in the U.S., production companies would be allowed to deduct the cost of producing the films from their taxes. Rep. Diane Watson, D-California, has been one of the program's biggest supporters. The measure would cost taxpayers $478 million over 10 years.
  • Extension and modification of duty suspension on wool products, wool research fund and wool duty refunds: The measure helps U.S. worsted wool fabric makers and clothing manufacturers. The bill extends provisions through 2014 or 2015 that were originally sponsored by Reps. Louise Slaughter, D-New York, and Melissa Bean, D-Illinois, in 2007. The measure would cost taxpayers $148 million.
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  • Extension of economic development credit for American Samoa: The measure would extend for two years provisions meant to help economic development in the U.S. territory of American Samoa. The measure would cost taxpayers $33 million.
  • Transportation fringe benefit to bicycle commuters: The measure would allow employers to provide benefits to employees who commute to work via bicycle, such as help purchasing and maintaining a bicycle. The measure would cost taxpayers $10 million."

  • Some of the additions to this bill have NOTHING to do with the current economic "crisis" that we are facing. All they are is more pork to sweeten the bill for certain constituencies. Pork.

    I was under the impression that Senator McCain was "Anti-Pork." If that is so, then why would he vote in favor of a bill that includes $110 Billion in additions? Discuss.

    Politics in the Age of Obama...

    The recent statements casting doubts about the objectivity of Vice Presidential Debate moderator Gwen Ifill has thoroughly and absolutely disgusted me.  Jim Geragty had absolutely no idea of the content of the book that Ifill has written other than the title, "Breakthrough: Politics and Race in the Age of Obama."  Apparently he is under the impression that the book is a biography of Barack Obama, which - according to everything I have seen - is not the case. 

    Here is the breakdown of the book from

    In THE BREAKTHROUGH, veteran journalist Gwen Ifill surveys the American
    political landscape, shedding new light on the impact of Barack Obama’s
    stunning presidential campaign and introducing the emerging young
    African American politicians forging a bold new path to political

    Ifill argues that the Black political structure formed
    during the Civil Rights movement is giving way to a generation of men
    and women who are the direct beneficiaries of the struggles of the
    1960s. She offers incisive, detailed profiles of such prominent leaders
    as Newark Mayor Cory Booker, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, and
    U.S. Congressman Artur Davis of Alabama, and also covers up-and-coming
    figures from across the nation. Drawing on interviews with power
    brokers like Senator Obama, former Secretary of State Colin Powell,
    Vernon Jordan, the Reverend Jesse Jackson, and many others, as well as
    her own razor-sharp observations and analysis of such issues as
    generational conflict and the "black enough" conundrum, Ifill shows why
    this is a pivotal moment in American history.

    is a remarkable look at contemporary politics and an essential
    foundation for understanding the future of American democracy.

    Gwen Ifill is an African American.  She was born September 29, 1955 in New York City.  She grew up during the civil rights movement.  Her choice of subject matter for her first book is brilliant due to the fact that its subject matter hits close to home for her.  As any writer knows, you write what you know.  And at this point, whether Obama wins this election or not, he is the FIRST African American candidate to win his party's nomination for President of the United States of America.  This is HISTORY, people.  100 years from now, Obama will be remembered for "breaking the glass ceiling" for African Americans.

    I find the entire "controversy" laughable. 

    Gwen Ifill should be applauded for her contributions to journalism, not attacked for writing what will likely be a very objective and well thought out examination of how far we have come since the Civil Rights Movement began.

    This is just another example of the conservative agenda so impressively utilized by Bush, Cheney, and Rove in the 2004 election, attempting to cloud the issues.  The issue here is whether or not Sarah Palin is ready for the job that Senator McCain has so irresponsibly offered her against his own party's advice. 

    Ifill will be objective as moderator.  I have never seen her act in any way other than professional and objective.  During the Edwards/Cheney debate she made one unfortunate misstep in her response to Vice President Cheney, but the fact of the matter is that it is the moderator's job to see to it that the format is maintained, and that means following the time constraints imposed.  It was her responsibility to keep Vice President Cheney's response to 30 seconds, and he should not have even attempted to modify the format. 

    We shall see if my suppositions are correct in a few hours, but I expect that Gwen Ifill will remain objective, courteous, and strict in her moderation, despite the criticism and outrage that have been thrown in her direction over the last few days.  I also expect that it will not make any difference.  Her credibility and objectivity have been questioned, and that will continue to affect her no matter the outcome.  This assassination of character has accomplished what was intended, and that is to absolutely nullify the results of the ONLY Vice Presidential debate that will occur during this election.

    Karl Rove, I salute you.  You have taught your disciples well.